Inside Unmanned Systems

DEC 2017 - JAN 2018

Inside Unmanned Systems provides actionable business intelligence to decision-makers and influencers operating within the global UAS community. Features include analysis of key technologies, policy/regulatory developments and new product design.

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8 unmanned systems inside December 2017/January 2018 W e all owe the Air Force thanks for many things—like inventing GPS, breaking the sound barrier and winning wars for us. However, the greatest thing the Air Force did for our country in October 2017 was kill a bunch of Carolina chickens back in 1943. If it wasn't for the tragic deaths of 150 of Thomas Lee Causby's chickens due to extremely low Army Air Force bomber f lights, we wouldn't have had President Trump's order to the FAA to experiment with local regulation of low altitude drone f light. How did Causby's chickens start all this? Well, our brave boys were flying bombers as low as 83 feet, which was scaring Causby's chickens so much that they ran into walls and killed themselves. As any red-blooded Carolina chicken farmer would do, Causby sued the government and the case eventually made it to the Supreme Court. The Air Force made the same ar- gument the Federal Aviation Association (FAA) makes to claim all airspace from the ground to outer space—that Federal pre- emption of all airspace is vital to air safety/ military readiness and they had a perfect right to f ly over those chickens at 83 feet. The court didn't agree. They ruled the Air Force violated the Fifth Amendment's pro- vision against taking private property for public use without just compensation. The United States Supreme Court held the Air Force had occupied Causby's property by the flight of airplanes, "which skim the surface but do not touch it, is as much an appropria- tion of the use of the land as a more conven- tional entry upon it." The Supreme Court put a floor on Federal airspace somewhere between 83 feet (the lowest flight) and 365 feet (the height determined as "public ease- by JAMES POSS, MAJ GEN (RET) USAF, CEO ISR IDEAS General Overview by James Poss, Maj Gen (RET) USAF DEAD CHICKENS, DRONES AND YOU Photo courtesy @thedrone_lass. THE FLIGHT OF AIRPLANES, WHICH SKIM THE SURFACE BUT DO NOT TOUCH IT, IS AS MUCH AN APPROPRIATION OF THE USE OF LAND AS A MORE CONVENTIONAL ENTRY UPON IT. United States v. Causby 328 U.S. 256 (1946)

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